Mobile technologies and the internet of things have greatly changed the way we interact with and communicate in our everyday lives. The retail shopping experience is no exception. With two out of every three shoppers now sporting a smartphone, the demand for a more personalized experience that leverages these devices is on the rise. Here are the ways in which mobile can help to increase retail sales this holiday season.
Make the shopping process smoother
More and more shoppers are browsing product pricing while shopping in-store. Retailers that are able to price-match, offer discounts, and help customers with this process through an app will be winning the hearts of shoppers extremely quickly; shoppers will choose to leave slow-moving and less tech-savvy retailers if better solutions are available. Amazon's app offers one of the best digital shopping experiences for research-hungry shoppers, allowing users to search bar codes of physical products and quickly scan pricing and product information at the few taps of a button. Its frictionless checkout system also allows shoppers to breeze through the purchase process in a matter of seconds. This is the ideal way that a mobile app should be used by retailers, however there are examples of disconnects between the digital and brick and mortar shopping experience. One look at the Chapters-Indigo app shows this. Many users have complained about a clunky interface, buggy shopping carts, and a refusal of brick and mortar retailers to price match products listed on the app. With how easy it is to lose shoppers in the fast moving retail industry, this app has caused some Indigo readers to switch over to Amazon for a better experience. Thoughtful app design and the competitiveness to price match will ensure a successful transition to using digital effectively.
Personalized Checkout and on-the-spot Rebates
Shoppers have grown to expect more and more personalization in their shopping experience. This extends past basic product customization, into how a customer interacts with a retailer's brand while in store. Mobile apps that offer express checkouts and on-the-spot discounts/rebates keep users engaged with your brand for longer, as well as reduce the amount of friction points between browsing and purchase. Beyond mobile checkout, retail staff that can leverage a mobile app to check inventory, request stock from other locations, and close a sale on-the-spot all combine to provide the customer with a better shopping experience. Retailers that can offer these mobile POS (point of sale) services immediately differentiate themselves from competition who are still using the traditional means of checkout.
Gathering Information to Anticipate Further Needs
Mobile apps that can track customer purchase behaviour, customer reviews, and customer sentiment provides actionable data points for retailers. These points can be analyzed and acted upon to provide a better overall customer experience as well as leveraged for marketing campaigns to better reach their shoppers. Push notifications built around a user's purchase behaviour further enhance that personalized shopping experience, and will provide more opportunities with which a user can interact with a retailer's brand.
These are three ways in which a mobile app can act to increase retail sales, as well as customer's experience in dealing with a retailer.
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